Blogs from Central Otago, Otago, South Island, New Zealand, Oceania

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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago December 15th 2012

Rugby rivalries aside, I've always loved travelling in New Zealand. For such a small country, it packs a lot of punch and a massive "wow" factor from a scenery standpoint. So it was with a lot of excitement that I grabbed an opportunity to cycle the historic Otago Rail Trail with World Expeditions/Adventure South. We did the special family itinerary which included a lot of fun activities enjoyed by kids and adults alike. The cycling was fantastic and really safe for the kids - we didn't want the trip to end.... read more
Lake Tekapo
cruising along
historic Dunstan House hotel

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago April 7th 2010

"For these were the men who led the way To the quiet valleys we know The hero band of this rugged land The diggers of long ago.” A roadside tribute to the gold diggers of the 1860s, many of whom found their way to the Otago goldfields via what is now known as The Old Dunstan Rd from Dunedin.The route is 170 kilometres long, some of it sealed, but the majority gravel or 4WD track. Tough as Old Boots Spare a moment for those miners. I did on a 300 metre climb not far from the Lammermoor Range and even closer to something called the Great Moss Swamp. I had the advantage of a modern 27 speed bike, clothing that could keep me warm even when it was wet, a feather down sleeping bag and ... read more
Weird Behaviour
Heavy Frost
Early Morning Frost

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago February 15th 2009

Hi-Di-Hi campers! I guess you guys will all be either fighting off frost bite, fanning back flames or trying to survive the recession so what better way to cheer you up then a gloating blog from your friends in paradise. We will do our best not to sound too smug, promise ;-) Seriously though, we do hope you are all ok. Sounds a little like the world is falling apart out there, anyone who wants to run away is welcome to come stay with us! Life down here has been pretty good. Christmas and New Year was VERY busy at work but we still managed to have some fun. Christmas was a traditional Turkey for lunch, a Finnish Dinner, lots of pool time and then some good old drinking games to finish it off, perfect! (Spoons’ ... read more
Peaceful
Fisheye view
Millenium Track

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago February 9th 2009

ALEXANDRA /OTAGO PENINSULA OAMARU Die Biker Rallye in Alexandra war ein ganz netter Anlass. Am Freitag angekommen, es war übrigens Feiertag, habe ich noch nicht mal das Zelt aufschlagen können, schon wurde mein Baby bewundert. Die Typen haben da grosse Augen gemacht. (Also nicht das Baby hier aufm Bild... Das würd mir auch noch gefallen... Ne ich sprech immer noch von meiner BMW R1150GS Adventure) Die Kiwis haben wirklich gestaunt, als ich denen erzählt hab, was das so für n Bike ist was ich damit schon so gemacht habe und was noch kommen wird. Es hatte sicherlilch einige BMW aufm Gelände, doch meine war die einzige GS. Mein Zeltnachbar, ein ganz komischer Kauz, ehemaliger Australier, der schon 35 Jahre in NZ wohnt, war echt begeistert. Doch ich kann mir vorstellen dass der noch für vieles begeisterungsfjähig ... read more
Das Zelt meines Nachbarn
Das war ein Fest.
...mit nem Haufen Wahnsinniger

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago January 19th 2009

Hello Everyone, We stopped twice on the way to Christchurch from Milford Sound. In Cromwell, we stayed in a Motel. It was wonderful. A whole kitchenette to ourselves. The next day we were hiking a around in a historic mining field and we talked to a family from New Zealand about the plants and animals. When we got to the top of the trail we took a different way down and were very far from our car and we walked and walked and walked. But this family came to our rescure and gave us a ride to our car. They saw we had gone the wrong way. It was so great of them. I can't thank them enough. We liked Cromwell, it is the wine and fruit growing area. We were able to find some RIPE ... read more
View from room at farm
Historic Gold Mine
Typical View NZ

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Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago February 5th 2008

Day 99: Dunedin to Middlemarch to Ranfurly. The first 60km through the Central Otago Goldfields I arrived at Dunedin's impressive railway station at nine this morning ready to catch a train along the Taieri Gorge Railway. Unfortunately the train wasn't a steam engine as I'd hoped (only to make my dad jealous, to be honest, I wasn't so bothered so long as I got to see the scenery and reached the end of the line in one piece). Having climbed aboard one of the old wooden carriages and found my seat, it was a short wait before we started slowly moving out of the station. Leaving the houses and warehouses of the city behind us, we entered the countryside, initially quite lush and green, it became drier and more barren, with mounds of schist stone rising ... read more
The Old Taieri Gorge Railway
One of many viaducts
A stop at Hindon

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago April 11th 2007

We had heard the refrain over and over from North Islanders: "If you think the North Island is beautiful, the South Island is gonna knock your socks off!" So, as we made 6-hour trip by ferry from Wellington (last stop on the North Island) then 3 hours more by coastal train to Christchurch, we were eager to see what awaited us in the wilder, more remote South Island. The first trick was to settle into the rented campervan that was waiting for us. The van, a 2-berth diesel VW with standard transmission, is not one of those behemoth motor homes folks drive in the states, but it is quite herky and longer than we had hoped. Nonetheless, it is cleverly outfitted with all the needed gear: gas stove, small fridge, sink, toilet/shower and a table ... read more
The Oamaru Express
Harvest Festival at Oamaru
His name is Shrek

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago October 2nd 2006

The idea to cycle the Otago Central Rail Trail came straight out of the Rough Guide - a 150Km, 3-day bike ride from Clyde to Middlemarch, really appealed. Originally the Otago Central Branch Railway was built (completed in 1921) to support the gold rush in the valleys of Otago, transporting important supplies to the then booming towns along the way. As its demand became less important and road regulations changed the line became uneconomical to run and was closed down. The DOC bought the disused line seeing its recreational potential and created the rail trail for all to enjoy. It is less popular with travellers and generally appeals more to families wishing to take the little ones out on a day outing or for Dunedin city folk wishing to get out into the countryside. We thought ... read more
Galloway Flats
Kicking Back
Price's Creek Viaduct

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago March 15th 2006

Having secured a job pear picking on Lammerview Orchard, Ettrick. We turned up the afternoon before & met Judith who showed us the openfire bungalow where we would be staying & the two girls we were sharing it with, Eva from Wales & Nicole from Holland. We were given a free run of the property which included a swimming pool, herb garden & acres of pear & apple trees & were given loads of fresh fruit & veggies to cook with. The morning started at 8:30 when Alistair came round to the house with Ram a Nepalese ex-policeman who was also going to be picking with us. We signed our contracts & tax forms but couldn't start work yet as it had rained the night before & we had to wait for the trees to dry ... read more
Sam, Luke & Ram on the Orchard

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Otago » Central Otago March 10th 2006

With our last few days in New Zealand, we took our car down the south east coast to the otago peninsula. The journey had one purpose (in my mind)- to see as many penguins, albatross, sea lions, and fur seals as possible. Well, the dream came true, and we were psyched to be up close, seeing these amazing sea mammals and birds in nature. We stayed at a place called Larnach Castle, which the locals say is more of a big house, but the only castle new zealand has. It was built in 1871 by william larnach, a wealthy merchant who immigrated to new zealand, but continued to fancy himself as an australian. He built the castle at one of the highest points on this penninsula (located 1/2 hour by car from the city Dunedin) with ... read more
View of the lighthouse at the Tip of Otago Peninsula
Majestic Royal Albatross in flight
Yellow-eyed penguin striking a pose




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